We have had days of northwest winds in New York and the birds have taken full advantage of the favorable conditions to hightail it south. We birders have been doing our best to get out as much as possible and I’m no exception. (Surprise!) Though sparrows tend to be the main focus of mid-to-late October birding here in New York City there are still plenty of other birds to see like the Eastern Phoebe up above. Enjoy this photo-heavy post and get out and see some birds!

Lark Sparrow

Lark Sparrow was a bird I thought I was going to miss this year but this one popped up for me at Fort Tilden on Thursday morning and stayed still long enough for me to get some photos. Kind of a dull example of the species but it was still a Lark Sparrow!

Field Sparrow at Fort Tilden

I saw a ton of Field Sparrows and this one at Fort Tilden was unbelievably interested in my digiscoping rig.

Saltmarsh Sparrow

I went out into Big Egg Marsh hoping for a Nelson’s Sparrow and found one, though this shot is of a Saltmarsh Sparrow. Ammodramus sparrows are my favorite sparrows. And it’s not even close.

Marsh Wren

This Marsh Wren was also at Big Egg Marsh and popped right up for me. I don’t get how marsh birds can perch on two reeds at once when the wind is blowing. That must hurt.

White-crowned Sparrow

White-crowned Sparrows are classy birds, even in juvenile plumage and on a chain link fence. This one was at Kissena Park.

White-crowned Sparrow adult

Adult White-crowned Sparrows are even better. This one was at Fort Tilden.

Common Yellowthroat in fall

Lots of birds fluff up against the cold but Common Yellowthroats, like this one at Jacob Riis Park, do a very good job of it.

Yellow-rumped Warbler

The most prevalent wood-warbler all weekend was, of course, the Yellow-rumped Warbler. This guy was one of billions (maybe a slight exaggeration) at Fort Tilden.

Yellow-rumped Warbler shadow

I got so sick of photographing Yellow-rumped Warblers that I started finding more entertaining ways to shoot them.

Hermit Thrush

This Hermit Thrush at Edgemere Landfill perched perfectly for me. Check out the rusty tail, cocked at the exact angle I wanted.

Ruby-crowned Kinglet in fall

The Ruby-crowned Kinglet is a fierce beast. This one was at Jacob Riis Park.

Sharp-shinned Hawk

This Sharp-shinned Hawk was also out looking for songbirds. But I think it wanted more than a picture. It landed about fifteen feet from me and froze. It did not know how to handle my proximity.

Savannah Sparrow

More sparrow! This Savannah Sparrow at Jacob Riis Park loved the Seaside Goldenrod.

Swamp Sparrow

Swamp Sparrows like this one at Fort Tilden are made for early morning light and fall colors.

Grasshopper Sparrow at Kissena Park

Seeing two Grasshopper Sparrows at Kissena Park at the end of my weekend’s birding was a real treat. I had only ever seen two my home borough, so seeing two at once doubled my Queens total and made me very happy.

Now go find some birds! Fall migration won’t last forever!

Written by Corey
Corey is a New Yorker who lived most of his life in upstate New York but has lived in Queens since 2008. He's only been birding since 2005 but has garnered a respectable life list by birding whenever he wasn't working as a union representative or spending time with his family. He lives in Forest Hills with Daisy and Desmond Shearwater. His bird photographs have appeared on the Today Show, in Birding, Living Bird Magazine, Bird Watcher's Digest, and many other fine publications. He is also the author of the American Birding Association Field Guide to the Birds of New York.